Press release: Council plans on new Dublin rules far from acceptable

Member states’ plans for a new Dublin system would make a compromise very difficult, warns Parliament’s chief negotiator

Estonia, which holds the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU, gave EU ambassadors a proposal on Wednesday for reforming the way in which the EU distributes asylum seekers among countries.

Commenting on the draft plans, Parliament’s lead MEP on the Dublin regulation Cecilia Wikström (ALDE, SE) says:

– “I welcome the work of the Estonian presidency in attempting to reach a common position in the Council on the Dublin regulation. The proposed system however is very far from what could be an acceptable solution for the European Parliament. If the Council were to agree on such a position it would make negotiations between the co-legislators very difficult.

– The proposal currently before the Council would perpetuate the current failed ad hoc responses of the EU to the migration crisis, instead of building a permanent system which could work both in times of normal and high pressures. I would urge Member States to carefully study the position of the European Parliament, adopted with a very large majority. The Parliament will be a constructive and ambitious partner in the legislative process, but we will not accept to repeat the mistakes of the past.”


Quick facts

A broad majority of MEPs endorsed Parliament’s negotiation mandate on Dublin on 16 November, calling for a mandatory relocation of asylum seekers to ensure that they are fairly distributed among member states and that the system will work on the ground.

Member states have still not agreed on a common position, but hope to be able to do so during the first half of 2018, after which the inter-institutional talks in view of reaching a final compromise could begin.

The Maltese and Estonian presidencies have been sounding out member states on their views on a new asylum system. The results of these bilateral talks were presented to EU ambassadors on Wednesday 29 November.

For mor information, please contact:

Linda Aziz, Head of Press of Cecilia Wikström

+32 486 94 76 82

Press release: Parliament presents its proposals to revise European asylum rules

The European Parliament has today adopted its position on the revision of the Dublin Regulation, after a vote by the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Thursday morning. The position was approved with a vast majority. MEP Cecilia Wikström (ALDE/SWE) is leading the revision and urges the European Council to adopt its position so that negotiations can start:

“The European asylum system is one of the key issues determining how Europe’s future will develop. As rapporteur, my goal is to create a truly new asylum system based on solidarity with clear rules and incentives to follow them, both for the asylum seekers and for all Member States.

The new Dublin Regulation must ensure that all countries share responsibility for asylum seekers. Furthermore it must also guarantee that all member states with external borders – the first place of arrival in Europe for most refugees – will take their responsibility in registering all arriving people, as well as protecting and maintaining the external borders of the EU.

It is time to put an end to a system in which refugees are forced into the hands of unscrupulous human traffickers who smuggle them through Europe. I urge the Council of Ministers to take a common position as soon as possible, so that trialogue negotiations can begin and a well-functioning, truly new European asylum system can be put into place as soon as possible.”

For more information, please contact

Sándor Blaskó

Tel : +32 2 283 00 89

Mob : +32 483 04 97 89

Video: ALDE #ValuesFirst

The European Union is built on values! The core of the project is democracy, rule of law, international solidarity, collaboration and fundamental rights. These are the building blocks of our collaboration. During the spring’s many elections across Europe, we’ve seen how populists have been trying to fragment and divide our union and communities with their hateful rhetoric. That is why it is so important that we Europeans that stand for openness dare to stand up for diversity, equality, and pluralism. That is how we build a strong Europe together! #ValuesFirst

Hearing those who don’t exist: The fight against statelessness


Statelessness will take centre stage in the European Parliament on Thursday (29 June), with two committees turning their attention to one of Europe’s most hidden and marginalised populations, write MEPs Claude Moraes and Cecilia Wikström.

Claude Moraes is chair of the European Parliament’s Justice and  Home Affairs Committee (LIBE) and Cecilia Wikström is chair of the Petitions Committee (PETI).

On Thursday, statelessness will take centre stage in the European Parliament’s LIBE and PETI committees, as its members turn their attention to one of Europe’s most hidden and marginalised populations.

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Press Release Brexit: MEPs want EU and UK to take care of citizens’ rights first

The EU and the UK government should negotiate a deal on the situation and rights of citizens as a matter of urgency and before starting the other Brexit talks, MEPs say.

In a joint hearing organised by the committees of Civil Liberties, Employment and Petitions, most MEPs underlined the “moral duty” to end the uncertainty created for both EU citizens living in the UK and UK nationals in the EU since the June referendum.

The EU should let go of the principle that “nothing is agreed until everything is agreed” in negotiations, because a quick solution for citizens’ rights is a matter of priority. “Let´s do this first”, they concurred.

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Reform of EU Asylum system: Wikström proposes permanent relocation system based on fairness and solidarity

ALDE MEP Cecilia Wikström today presented, at the civil liberties committee of the European Parliament, her report on the reform of the EU asylum rules. Wikström has modified the Commission’s proposal to reform the Dublin regulation that, according to the leading Swedish liberal MEP, is no longer fit for purpose. Wikström’s proposal is based on the following key principles:

•    Automatic registration of all arrivals by Member States with external borders to speed up process and break the incentives for secondary movements
•    A compulsory and permanent relocation system so all Member States are legally obliged to accept asylum seekers and contribute to relieve pressure on frontline countries
•    Removal of pre-Dublin admissibility procedures, so the responsibility for conducting admissibility procedures is shared amongst member states
•    Light family procedure to allow family reunification after assessment of the application
•    Allocation of groups of up to 30 applicants at a time
•    Introduction of an emergency break in the automatic corrective allocation system, which will be suspended if the member state does not protect and manage its external border
•    No opt-out from the corrective allocation system: paying EUR 250.000 per applicant to avoid the accommodation of refugees, as proposed by the Commission, must not be possible
•    Five year transitional period to determine the quotas for each member state based on factors such as GDP and population
•    Faster appointment of guardians for unaccompanied minors read more…

Address in Strasbourg: Debate with the commissionary for migration

Address in the plenary session by Cecilia Wikström, Strasbourg 1 february 2017:

Speech 1 february strasbourg

– Mr President, I would like to say thank you, Madam Commissioner, for your engagement, your commitment and your good intentions. It goes without saying that the European Union should always contribute to stability, growth and the protection of human rights and democracy in our neighbouring countries, but we must never, ever, outsource our own responsibilities and obligations in respect of migration policies and people in need, or externalise our borders.

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Cecilia Wikström (ALDE, SE) re-elected Chair of the Petitions Committee

LIBE committee meeting. Exchange of views with Bernard CAZENEUVE, French Minister of the Interior

LIBE committee meeting. Exchange of views with Bernard CAZENEUVE, French Minister of the Interior

Cecilia Wikström will continue as Chair of Parliament’s Petitions Committee for the coming two and a half years. She was re-elected in the first round by Committee members on Monday.

“I am honoured by the trust shown in me by the Petitions Committee. As its Chair, I will now continue our work to make sure that the EU does better at addressing the needs and experiences of European citizens through our legislative work”, Ms Wikström said after the vote.

MEPs also elected, by acclamation, the four Vice-Chairs that will form, together with Cecilia Wikström, the Committee’s bureau:

Ms Rosa Estaràs Ferragut (EPP, ES) will be first Vice-Chair,

Ms Roberta Metsola (EPP, MT) will be second Vice-Chair,

Ms Marlene Mizzi (S&D, MT) will be third Vice-Chair and

Mr Pál Csáky (EPP, SK) will be fourth Vice-Chair.

According to the Rules of the Procedure of the European Parliament (Rule 204), the composition of the bureau of each committee must reflect the diversity of Parliament. It is not possible, for example, to have an all male or all female bureau, or for all of the Vice-Chairs to come from the same Member State.